This Week @MHS

Here’s a look at what is happening at the MHS this week:

On Monday, 22 July, at 6:00 PM: The Legacy of the China Trade in Massachusetts: The Emergence of a Global Boston with Gwenn Miller, College of the Holy Cross; Dael Norwood, University of Delaware; and moderator Tunney Lee, MIT. Trade with China began in earnest in the peaceful years following the Revolution, with ports in Salem and Boston emerging as some of the most dynamic sites of economic activity in the early American landscape. This cross-cultural exposure and influence helped cast Boston’s strong regional identity and marked the city as an international force in its own right. This discussion will explore the breadth of Boston’s early global reach and how reflections of this past are still felt today. A pre-talk reception begins at 5:30 PM; the speaking program begins at 6:00 PM. There is a $10 per person fee (no charge for MHS Fellows and Members or EBT cardholders).

On Wednesday, 24 July, at 12:00 PM: “That Agitating Element”: African Americans, Native Americans, & the Push for Citizenship in the 19th Century with Kevin Hooper, University of Oklahoma.This talk explores the ways in which African Americans and Native Americans shaped conceptions of U.S. citizenship in the 19th century. Although citizenship became more of a federal concern after the Civil War, this talk argues that African American and Native American activists began this transition in the antebellum period by appealing directly to the federal government to assert their rights.  This is part of our brown-bag lunch programBrown-bags are free and open to the public. 

On Thursday, 25 July, and Friday, 26 July, from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM: LGBTQ+ Rights & the U.S. Courts. This teacher workshop explores LGBTQ+ rights through pivotal U.S. court cases, with a particular focus on the 2003 Lawrence v. Texas case that decriminalized homosexuality. The program is offered in partnership with History UnErased, an organization that helps teachers incorporate LGBTQ+ history in their classroom and curriculum. This workshop is open to all K-12 educators. Teachers can earn 45 Professional Development Points and 2 graduate credits (for an additional fee). There is a $40 per person registration fee.

On Saturday, 27 July at 10:00 AMThe History & Collections of the MHS. This is a 90-minute docent-led walk through of our public rooms. The tour is free and open to the public. If you would like to bring a larger party (8 or more), please contact Curator of Art Anne Bentley at 617-646-0508 or

“Can She Do It?”: Massachusetts Debates a Woman’s Right to Vote is open Monday and Wednesday through Saturday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and Tuesday from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM. Featuring dynamic imagery from the collection of the MHS, the exhibition illustrates the passion on each side of the suffrage question. For over a century, Americans debated whether women should vote. The materials on display demonstrate the arguments made by suffragists and their opponents. While women at the polls may seem unremarkable today, these contentious campaigns formed the foundations for modern debates about gender and politics.

Take a look at our calendar page for information about upcoming programs.